Des Moines Artists Are Changing Lives By Giving Back

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DES MOINES, Iowa — One step inside Des Moines’ Mainframe Studios and you realize it is a unique blend of local artists.  “From glass blowing to rock work, to letterpress to painting,” explained Mainframe Studios Director Siobhan Spain.  On Small Business Saturday shoppers will be doing much more than helping these artists make a living, they can help change lives, maybe even save a few.  Spain said, “Two artists on our fourth floor, they have daughters with cystic fibrosis and they are donating seventy-five percent of their art sales towards the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation on Saturday.”

Tim Huginin and Jeff Rider hope to prolong the lives of their daughters through research and are two of the more than eighty tenants who create art inside the building that has become an artistic melting pot.  “We realize we are better together. The more we lift each other up, the better we are as a whole,” said Spain.

The idea to give back their sales has spread like a canvas to others in the building.  “We have over ten other artists giving back to the cause of their choice as well.” Spain said.  John Bosley, of Bozz Prints, is among them.  He will be donating ten percent of his sales Saturday to Shoes That Fit, a nonprofit providing new shoes to poverty-stricken children.  He said, “When I was little I loved having a brand new pair of sneakers and just the smell of them.   Just thinking that I could give that to another little kid that loves shoes as much as I do, that`s really cool.”

Small Business Saturday is arguably these artists’ most profitable day of the year but like their art, they would rather share it.  “Inspiration takes many forms as does giving and taking and in this case we are going to be giving and that’s cool to give back like this,” Bosley said.

Creating something just as inspiring if not more than their artwork, hope and happiness for others.  “Art is such a powerful connector and I get inspired by that.  To see these artists giving back as well, I don’t know what could be better,” said Spain.

Mainframe Studios is located on Keo Way.  Shoppers can enjoy the free Saturday event from 10 am until 4 pm.  For a full list of artists you can visit their website at


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